MMS GEM has had a lot of fun first quarter exploring problem-solving and critical thinking with STEM. To get our brains going after summer, students began with the mission to “save” Fred, the gummy worm, using limited materials. From there, students explored what STEM was as well as the real-life implications of science and engineering by looking at news articles featuring the latest scientific discoveries and the newest engineering feats. Next, we engineered a series of challenges which had students create within a specific set of criteria and constraints. These ranged from chalk art based on perfect string circles, calculating the amount of paper towels on an opened roll, index cards towers, creating ziplines, and more. We will continue to come back to STEM periodically throughout the year but students are looking forward to moving on to the debate process in the 2nd quarter.